Changing shapes…

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As anyone who has children will know, they change everything – in ways that you could never possibly have imagined. Until you have children you can’t really comprehend it, and even now, almost five years after having my first child, I’m still adjusting to life as a Mum.

Another thing I’m still adjusting to is my new ‘figure’ (if you can all it that). I haven’t quite accepted that it will never be the same again, but despite regular exercise and healthy eating I’m still not back to my pre-baby body (or anywhere near it for that matter). Sometimes it bothers me that my once flat stomach now has a distinct roundness to it, other times I simply look at my two babies in amazement and feel blessed and grateful that my body was able to grow and birth them so efficiently. It’s pretty mind-blowing when you think about it.

However mind-blowing and amazing having children is, it doesn’t change the fact that I’m currently carrying a ‘muffin top’ and whilst I’m in the process of reducing it, I am having to dress cleverly to hide it in the meantime. As I see a lot of new Mums for style consultations who want help with dressing their new shape I thought I would share some of my top tips here so if you too are facing a similar ‘changing shape’ situation you can get a few tips on how to still look and feel your fabulous best, no matter what your shape, size or stage of weight loss journey you may be at!

1. Go High Rise

I was a slave to the low-cut skinny jean pre-baby but post-baby, oh my! NOT a good look. Not only are low-rise jeans less than ideal when you spend your day bending to pick up your baby or crawling on the floor to play with them, they also allow nowhere for a little weight gain to hide! Enter the high rise jean. I can’t tell you how comfortable high rise jeans are! They are also super-flattering as they smooth out all the lumps and bumps. I’m a complete convert. I urge you to give them a try, I doubt you’ll ever go back to any other rise afterwards.

I basically live in this pair these days.

waven jeans personal stylist anna mewes yorkshire leeds

2. Good Foundations

Now we’re not talking corsets here, but a good foundation layer goes a long, long way. I typically now always way a foundation layer underneath everything (I’m also always cold so this helps me keep toasty too!) I’m obsessed with the base layers from Hope Fashion and have their long sleeve scoop tops in every colour. They are comfortable, breathable, warm and just feel like they’re smoothing everything out beautifully. I also love their foundation skirts for an alternative look to jeans which is still super-comfy and practical (they come in two lengths so you can opt for whichever is best for you).

If you decide to invest in some items from Hope (and I highly recommend that you do!), enter code STYLE32 at checkout to receive 10% off your next order!

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3. Layers

At this time of year layering is an ideal and practical way of hiding any lumps and bumps (also perfect if you’re breastfeeding for easy, discreet access). A look I’ve been wearing a lot lately is a tee or vest with a denim shirt and chunky knit cardigan over the top. It keeps everything covered, its warm (you see a theme here, I like to be warm!) and I love the look of layering. My current fave denim shirt is this little number.

anna mewes personal stylist leeds blogger

4. Don’t Hide

Rather than swamping your frame in oversized clothes to try and hide your figure, think instead of drawing attention to the parts you DO like. Wear colour and patterns, accessories etc. on your top half if you’re conscious of your bottom half – that way when people look at you their eyes will be drawn upwards to where all the action is! Wear dark shades on your lower half but keep things fitted – wearing clothes that are too big for you or don’t fit properly will only make you look bigger than you are. Treat yourself to some properly fitting items, even if you only plan to wear them for a short time whilst you lose your baby weight, you deserve to look and feel fabulous whatever your current shape or size may be. Embrace it, enjoy it and rock it!

 

Jeans For Genes

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As someone who basically lives in her jeans (hello Mum uniform!) I thought it only fitting that I do a jeans-related post this week in support of ‘Jeans For Genes’, which raises money for children with genetic disorders (‘Jeans For Genes’ day is this Friday).

I have been a slave to my skinnies for several years now but discovered boyfriend jeans a couple of years ago and have loved adding these into the mix. For Autumn I’m keen to add some more variety to my day-to-day uniform so thought I’d share my high street finds and recommendations…

The Girlfriend

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The cut of girlfriend jeans tends to be slightly slimmer than that of boyfriends, meaning they’re a great first step away from skinnies if this is your comfort zone. When I first tried boyfriend jeans I felt a little scruffy, however girlfriends are more flattering and I love the wash of these from Gap (pictured above), which are available in petite and tall too. I also love the styling in this shot; a simple shirt and either trainers or heels works so well and demonstrates their versatility.

The Kick-Flare

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I’m tall, and this style of jean makes me feel as though I look like I can’t get a pair long enough, however if you’re petite I think they’re a lovely look. The kick-flare is definitely the ‘cool girl’ jean for Autumn and when styled correctly (see above) they can look great. I’m still to be convinced I have to admit – I mean what footwear would you put with these in the winter?! On the plus side, they’re great for showing off your ankles; the slimmest part of your leg and therefore a very flattering point at which to wear your hemline. (p.s. extra cool-girl style points if yours have a frayed hem)

The Bootcut

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Bootcut is back (did they ever go away?!) This style of jean is incredibly flattering on most shapes, in particular those of you with curves. If you have a Triangle body shape (that’s me) they are your best friend as they will balance out your hips, hurrah! I wore them when they were first ‘in’ and am considering revisiting them this season, with a wedge trainer, simple tee and statement necklace.

The Skirt

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I recently purchased this skirt (pictured above) from Monsoon and have already got loads of wear out of it. Whilst the weather has been warmer I’ve been pairing it with simple tees/vests and either trainers or sandals. Once the weather turns cooler I’ll be switching to ankles boots and knits. A perfect trans-seasonal piece to add to your denim collection! The length is great too as I can still be messing around with the kids and retain my modesty!

Get Involved With Jeans For Jeans

If you’re in need of some new denim then head to GAP this week as they are donating £1 from every sale of jeans bought between now and the 23rd Sept to the Jeans for Genes campaign!

OR

My favourite local Ilkley boutique, Attic, are getting involved on social media! Just post of picture of yourself wearing your favourite jeans on your social media channel of choice this week using the hashtags #jeansforgenes and #atticwomenswear and Attic will donate £1! They will also donate £1 for every pair of jeans sold in-store this week. You can check them out here.

Image sources 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Pleated Skirt & Ankle Boots

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I generally don’t do muted colours and it’s rare that I wear black, but every once in a while it’s nice to change things up a bit.

This leather jacket has been a staple in my wardrobe for some time now and it goes with everything. I love how it toughens up this floaty, pleated skirt. The addition of boots makes this a perfect Autumn outfit and I’ll just add some black tights and boots now the weather really has taken a turn for the chilly! I’ve also been wearing it with this jumper of late for extra warmth and comfort.

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Jacket – Topshop (similar here)

T-Shirt – Maison Scotch at attic womenswear

Skirt – Vila at attic womenswear

Boots – Sol Sana at attic womenswear

Photography by Clare Chojnowski.